”These days, many people when speaking of ´aliens´, refer only to the ´Greys´, and disregard any mention of the human looking visitors from the twentieth century.” This comment and conclusion regarding contactee research is found in the epilogue to ufologist Moira McGhee´s latest book The Days of the Space Brothers, published in 2020. I can only agree. If there is one area of research that has been neglected, especially by American ufologists, it is the classic contactees of the 1950s. This work by McGhee is therefore a welcome contribution to our knowledge of a somewhat taboo and controversial subject.
The Days of the Space Brothers present, in chronological order, the history of the contactee phenomenon beginning with pre-Adamski contacts like Albert Coe, Leo Dworshak and Udo Wartena. Howard Menger is also included in this list as his contacts began already in 1932. But here Moira makes a rather strange remark regarding Menger: ”He once suggested he may write another book which would ´settle lingering doubts and create more of a public sensation than anything revealed in the past´. He never did write that book, and died in 2009 aged eigthy-seven.” (p. 19). In a letter to me, May 16, 1985, Howard Menger said that his new book would soon by published. And it was published. In 1991 I received a signed copy of The High Bridge Incident. The Story Behind the Story, written in collaboration with his wife Connie Menger.
What makes Moira McGhee especially well qualified for writing about contactees is her long-standing friendship with two exceptional women, Millen Cooke and Rosemary Decker. Both of them ”silent contactees” and deeply involved in the early contactee scene in the U.S. In her former book The Alien Gene, Moira McGhee made quite a startling claim in connection with her two friends: ”Recently I have been asking myself just how connected both these friends of mine were with the Visitors? I have been able to gather they had both had personal contacts before 1952. They also knew in advance of Adamski´s meeting in the desert with Orthon, but chose to stay back at Palomar – why? Was Adamski the ´chosen one´ to pass on messages?”
(Moira McGhee, The Alien Gene, p. 47).
The chapters George Adamski, Rosemary and Millen are filled with much new data and interesting discussions on the implications of their contact experiences. There is also a reprint of Son of the Sun, a prophetic article written by Millen Cooke in 1947, using the pen name Alexander Blade. Rosemary Decker had a long association with George Adamski but eventually, with other friends, felt compelled to withdraw her support: ”Yes, he was contacted, although his ego was inflated beyond a safe point, and he subsequently suffered the consequences… We were all concerned about his well-being, and grew worried about his later ego trips and false claims, but he was not reachable by reason.” (p. 67)
Today it is very difficult to come upon any new data on Millen Cooke and Rosemary Decker. They had both very extensive collections of UFO material. After her death Millen´s archive was passed on to Rosemary. But Rosemary´s home in California burned down some years later and everything was lost. ”We will never know their hidden secrets”, writes McGhee. Somewhat frustating is that Moira herself has hundreds of letters from her two friends, letters which she will not share with other researchers. Hopefully a future generation of investigators will have access to these letters.
From my vantage point here in Sweden I was deeply fascinated by the chapters on early Australian and New Zealand ufology and ufologists: Fred and Phyllis Dickeson, Fred Stone, Edgar Jarrold a.o. Fred and Phyllis Dickeson were early Adamski co-workers but terminated their support when they found his later claims untenable. Instead they became involved with the rather unusual contactee Mr. X who had both physical meetings with alien visitors and received their messages in his letter box. McGhee devotes an entire chapter to this contact case and also an annex with his writings. I find this story highly dubious, especially since the visitors take definite sides in the Middle East conflict in this message received on June 8, 1967: ”We are making further attempts to rectify the world trouble… Israel is on the side of justice, for she has a destiny to fulfill… That is where our sympathies are. Her part is all-important to us and the whole world. In our prophecies of long ago, we are told of her rise to great things. Justice is on her side.” (p. 113-114). In my view no culturally highly advanced alien visitors would take sides in a national conflict or war. With messages like these from Mr. X one could speculate if he became involved in a covert Mossad operation, using fake space messages to increase the support for Israel in the Six-Day War between 5-10 June 1967.
Two chapters are devoted to the very controversial issue of aliens among us. Here we find summaries of the experiences of Daniel Fry, South African contactee Edwin, Ludwig Pallman a.o. Included in this list is also the very complicated Italian Amicizia case, which I have never considered to be a genuine contact. According to Edoardo Russo in Italy his group CISU has thoroughly investigated the Amicizia story and are very adamant that this is a complicated hoax involving many people in Italy, "a dark page of Italian ufology". Unfortunately they have not published the extensive CISU documentation, which I hope they will do in the near future. My Danish friend and research colleague ReneErik Olsen, a professional photographer, have studied the photos and films from Italy and concludes they are fakes using models. If the aliens described in the Amicizia story really do exist they are not the kind of people I would buy a used car from.
Very early in my ufological career I became involved in several quite remarkable aliens among us cases in Sweden. Ever since then I have often pondered the $64 question – Who are these people. When John Keel visited me in October 1976 we especially discussed this enigma, involving also the MIB – Men In Black. Keel was intrigued by this aspect and convinced there were aliens among us. “I´d really like to get one”, was his comment. If we as private UFO researchers can dicover so much data on this hidden activity then special operations intelligence groups must have studied these alien visitors for a long time and keeping an eye on their activities. The Olden Moore case of 1957 is an early indication of an operation by intelligence operatives. UFOs is not only a scientific problem but a counterintelligence problem.
Moira McGhee mention this connection in several chapters: ”It only stands to reason that the government would keep this in their ´need to know files´. If the general public were to know that we had extraterrestrials incognito in our midst, it wouldn´t be long before every ´nut job´ in our community would be accusing their neighbours, or others, of being ´aliens´ and a taking the law into their own hands.” (s. 184). I agree with Moira and have never been an advocate of total disclosure, which in my view would be both dangerous and irresponsible. Better a slow process with the help of private UFO organizations.
The Days of the Space Brothers is a good introduction to and history of the contactee enigma. There is an extensive index but unfortunately no notes and references to the many cases and statements in the book. Private photos of especially Millen Cooke and Rosemary Decker would have also been a bonus. Hopefully this book will inspire a new generation of investigators delving into this most fascinating subject. A hope was beautifully expressed by Fred Stone, a pioneer in Australian ufology and quoted by McGhee:
”Keep plugging away as a pioneer, watch for every angle where-in an answer may be found. Do not be satisfied with the accepted ones, maybe there is some greater answer than that generally considered the real one – an answer that perhaps you or others have avoided because it is offbeat, and you are afraid of being looked askance at or perhaps not so popular… Now to those who I know are true pioneers, those in some cases are leaders of groups, some of whom are deep thinkers, and are still pioneering on, still searching and digging… Continue your great quest, do not be deterred or swayed from it, and if age and health cause you to take a quieter way of life, continue giving all aid to youth, hand the torch on to them…”